Spatial Distribution of Organic Matter in the Surface Sediments of Calape Bay, Bohol, Central Philippines


Francis Albert T. Argente*,1,2, Herminie P. Palla1,3, Charina I. Narido1,4,
Milagros A. Celedonio1,5, and Danilo T. Dy1

1Marine Biology Section, Biology Department,
University of San Carlos, Cebu City, 6000 Philippines
2Department of Fisheries Science, Pangasinan State University – Binmaley Campus,
Binmaley, Pangasinan, 2417 Philippines
3College of Fisheries and Aquatic Science, Western Philippines University – Puerto Princesa Campus, Puerto Princesa City, Palawan, 5300 Philippines
4Mathematics and Science Department, Holy Name University,
Tagbilaran City, Bohol, 6300 Philippines
5Natural Science Department, Dr. Emilio B. Espinosa Sr. Memorial State College of Agriculture and Technology, Mandaon, Masbate, 5411 Philippines

corresponding author: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Calape Bay is a semi-enclosed marine system located in Bohol, Central Philippines. Despite the relatively restricted water circulation and dispersion of particulate organic matter, mariculture activities have not decreased in Calape Bay. Organic matter (OM) content of the surface sediment was quantified to serve as indicator of the current status of the benthic system after almost 30 years since mariculture was launched. Surface sediments were mainly composed of sand and gravel. Highest sediment OM (15.3%) was observed at the middle portion of the bay where the mariculture facilities are located. Mean OM at the mariculture facilities (11.4%) was higher than at the mouth of the bay (5.7%) and near the river mouth (9.4%). Finer sediments contained more OM. The high sediment OM in the bay will bring changes in the benthic environment in the years to come if mariculture activities are not regulated. Hence, monitoring of sediment OM is recommended.



Sediments perform major functions in the marine environment by serving as natural trap for various substances including toxicants (Nasr et al. 2006; Hu et al. 2009; Knies & Martinez 2009). Bottom sediments are a good source of nutrients which supports primary production in the water column, as shown in benthic pelagic coupling (Navarrete et al. 2005; Arndt & Regnier 2007; Ubertini et al. 2012). Sediments are also capable of storing considerable amount of organic matter (OM) which may influence the bottom water oxygen concentration (Werner et al. 2003; Koho et al. 2013). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .





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